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Bowman, Elizabeth

Elizabeth A Bowman

Research Associate - Grassland Fungal Ecologist
Department of Integrative Biology

I am a fungal and evolutionary ecologist interested in the development and maintenance of symbiotic interactions.


Office Location

Postal Address
2907 Lake Austin Dr.
Austin, TX 78703

I am a postdoctoral associate researcher at the Brackenridge Field Laboratory in Austin, TX examining microbial communities associated with the invasive grass, Megathyrsus maximus, in south Texas grasslands. Here, I am focusing on answering two questions: a) how does invasion of M. maximus impact established microbial community composition and function and b) to what extent do microbial communities inhibit or reinforce invasion success?

To answer these questions, I am conducting both observational and experimental studies (outlined below) to tease apart these hypotheses and the functional contribution of multiple microbial communities—pathogenic, mutualistic, and saprotrophic.

Previously, I studied how abiotic and biotic factors related to climate change shape communities of fungal symbionts associated with Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) across isolated montane forests in central and southern Arizona. For this work, I focused on ectomycorrhizal and foliar endophytic fungi to link above- and below-ground processes aiming to capture the ecology of tree symbionts in a whole-plant context. I was particularly interested in examining how community disassembly and local variation across these communities may affect the outcomes of these plant-fungal associations.

Bowman EA and Arnold AE. 2021. Drivers and implications of distance decay differ for ectomycorrhizal and foliar endophytic fungi across an anciently fragmented landscape. ISME J. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41396-021-01006-9

Bowman EA, Hayden DR, and Arnold AE. 2021. Fire and local factors shape ectomycorrhizal fungal communities associated with Pinus ponderosa in mountains of the Madrean Sky Island Archipelago. Fungal Ecol. 46: 101013.  DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.funeco.2020.101013

Daru BH, Bowman EA, Pfister DH, and Arnold AE. 2018. Capturing the diversity of endophytic fungi preserved in herbarium specimens. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B. 374: 20170395. DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2017.0395.

Bowman EA and Arnold AE. 2018. Distributions of ectomycorrhizal and foliar endophytic fungal communities associated with Pinus ponderosa along a spatially constrained elevation gradient. Am J Bot 105: 687-699. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/ajb2.1072

Huang Y-L, Bowman EA, Massimo NC, Garber NP, U'Ren JM, Sandberg DC, Arnold AE. 2018. Using collections data to infer biogeographic, environmental, and host structure in communities of endophytic fungi. Mycologia 110: 47-62. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00275514.2018.1442078

Fraser SJ, Bowman EA, Gianopulos NG, Newcombe G. 2016. Xanthoria parietina in the inland Pacific Northwest. N Am Fungi 11:1-12. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2509/naf2016.011.002